Skip to content

Month: March 2018

Don’t Publish in the Fake Journals

When I started my master study early 2007, immediately I got a fellowship from my university. A condition in the fellowship contract was to publish at least two journal papers, without mentioning which kind of journal. I was entirely new in this business, and I had nobody to guide me. When I got the first set of results from my research, I started writing a paper. At that time, I got an email from a journal inviting me to publish a paper. The publication price was so low, almost 50$. They wrote in the “About” page of the journal that the impact factor of the journal is 1.2. Immediately, I finish the paper and sent it to them. Surprisingly, after almost one day, they sent me an email, Congratulations, your paper has been accepted! Without any review !!

I was so happy, to have my first paper getting published. There was nobody to tell me that you have to check the impact factor and the quality of the journal from WoS. Anyway, after few years, I realized what the problem is. In fact, I regret about those papers published in those journals. The quality and the content of the papers was not bad.

After these years, I started writing for impact factor or high-quality journals. However, still those papers are like a nightmare in my academic life, and they came back to me from time to time. The sad thing in academia is, people are looking at you negative points. I have to say that those papers were negative points in my academic career but that is just an early stage trial for publication. I have been rejected in many job application partially because of them. I got negative feedback like “The applicant has published in fake journals” One of my grant application also rejected recently because the reviewer took a bad impression on me and he said, “this investigator has many papers published in the fake journal.” Well, as I said they are not many, they are just four papers.

In fact, there are different kind of fake journals and quality journals nowadays. Fake journals are well-known now. If they are not listed in WoS, then my advice is to do not publish because it does not count for you. There is one good trick that I like to do sometimes. There are many good journals listed in Elsevier or WoS, and they did not get impact factor yet. Most of the time, those journals are published papers in open access style. Here, you will get two benefits. First, you will get better citation since they are open access, and second, they will get impact factor soon since they are open access and following peer review process.

So, don’t make the mistake that I did in my academic life. I’m trying to erase them as much as I can by taking care of my papers and my work. I believe that putting more efforts in your job, taking care about what you are doing, update your self, be honest and love what you do, then finally people will appreciate and recognize you.

My story with t-way testing

When I started my Ph.D. research around 2009, my supervisor suggested working on t-way testing. The whole software testing field was new to me, although I came with a good background in benchmarking of distributed systems. But now I can say it was not really software testing rather it was benchmarking. I started by reading several books about the software engineering and then other books about software testing. Later, I understand the whole process, and I was able to implement my first draft of code to generate t-way test suites. I met a friend of mine who worked on the use of search algorithms in control engineering. I realized that could be useful in my work and after several weeks of discussion I started using particle swarm optimization (PSO) for t-way testing. I was the first who implement the PSO in t-way. However, I was not the first who use search algorithms. One other researcher used Simulated Annealing (SA). After graduation and getting my degree, I realized that, instead of t-way tasing, I also have something to say about these search algorithms. I have used the t-way testing as a case study then and I with my supervisor implemented several improvements of the search algorithms and applied those improvements into t-way testing.

We enjoyed doing this job actually, and we implemented many new variants of those algorithms by making some small changes and contributions to those search algorithms. We published several papers in that direction. In fact, in software testing in general and t-way specifically, few famous names think that they are guard and god of this field. That is not wrong actually. However, they started criticizing us, indirectly by giving tough comments on our papers and also rejecting many of our papers. In fact, there was one reason behind this behavior. They thought that we are repeating ourselves and even they were asking for new bounds in t-way testing. In fact, those reviewers missing our aim in the papers although we tried to elaborate that in the text.

We aimed to say something in the search algorithm part not the t-way testing part. The t-way testing here was just a case study. Now you may ask why we did not use the standard mathematical benchmarks in optimization methods? Well, we thought to do that also, but as far as we have a real problem why we use some theoretical problem? Using this approach, already many people cited our papers by using our improvements on the search algorithms.

In fact, these days we stopped writing those papers although we still have many things to say. But, when the editors see the t-way testing phrase, they have few choices for reviewers, and when they get our paper, they just reject it without reading.

I think the generation research of t-way testing is getting into saturation nowadays. It is very hard to publish a paper in that direction especially when the paper goes to those well-known names in this field. However, there are many things that we can say in the application of t-way testing. T-way testing is not applied very well to the real-life problems and also in the industry. So, the contribution now is in the application, not the generation.